Carrack | Mission Brewery

very good
28 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Mission Brewery
California, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mactrail on 08-06-2013

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Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 143
Photo of josanguapo
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

From Zombier. In Teku glass. Watching Lod Soprano 3x11. Caramel and pineapple, with a good dose of bitterness and a smooth and dangerously drinkable feeling for such a high ABV

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Photo of LennyOvies
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L- Dark brick red cloudy body, fluffly tan head with medium retention, leaving a thin crown the entire time you drink it.
S- Caramel, brown sugar and piney hops.
T- Upfront fairly sweet with caramel malts, then it turns bitter with a big citrusy piney hop punch mixed with a warm touch and booze flavor thanks to the high ABV. All the flavors mix up at the end, they feel a bit muddled.
F- Medium, rich.
O- Very good, but it does throw too many strong flavors at you at once, they rush you. Even though it has more than 10% abv, it feels like an easy drink, careful.

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Photo of brentk56
3.46/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: A bit of a bubble show on the pour and then an inch of foam settles on the hazy copper liquid

Smell: Brown sugar, caramel and pine

Taste: Very sweet, on the front end, with caramel tones building; in the middle, the dank, resinous pine flavors overwhelm with bitterness; the finish is a combination of the overwhelming sweetness and bitter flavors

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: A bit of a mish-mash of styles and the combination of a cloying sweetness and an unappealing hop selection make this beer something I would just rather not drink

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Photo of hophugger
3.36/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a murky, golden-brown color with decent tan head and minimal lacing. Aroma is up front with a nice balance of sweet malt, hops and caramel. Taste is very similar to aroma, with a little more of a hop kick, and then finishing with some biter hops and a light coating of caramel malt. Decent beer and balanced very well !!!!!!!!

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Photo of Brutaltruth
4.23/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed from a growler via Country Fresh Market and Produce in Beechmont for a bargain price I might add. This most excellent imperial red pours a muddled mahogany with a fantastic head of off white foam that leaves some exceptional lacing and slowly dissipates to a thick pool and thick ring of foam. Nose of rich dark brown sugars, sweet pineapple from the citrus hops, earthy goodness, and butterscotch. Flavors follow the nose with brown sugars balancing out the citrus hops featuring pineapple and sweet lemon candy, and finally culminating in a cascade of bittering hops that presents itself in the back and aftertaste. Smooth and lightly chewy mouth feel is actually quite refreshing with the hops balance and a buttery butterscotch/rich caramel flavor that battles with the hops ending in a lightly bitter aftertaste and strong booze note from the alcohol which is a creeper. Enjoyed after mowing the lawn....and another...perhaps 2 more.....not sure at this point, but it is highly worth praise from hop heads and a sneaker of the malt lovers out there wanting to break through to the IPA side of life.

If brewing an imperial IPA is about balance, then this is your brew.


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Photo of oberon
4.04/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass a clear deep copper/bronze with a sticky thinner white head atop.A great mix of citric hops and deep caramel malts with neither really winning out,great balance.Flavors are slightly earthy upfront with some citric hops coming in,there is a pretty large sweeter malt base through to the finish,like brown sugar and caramel,some alcohol sweetness as well.A nice beer alot of hops with alot of sweetness as well.

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Photo of crob3888
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky, hazy Amber. Beige head leaves tons of clinging lace on the glass. Smell is of malts, pine resin, and a little rye. Taste is the same, some robust malt with light hopping and a good rye flavor. The 10% alcohol is well hidden. Mouthfeel is creamy. This goes down dangerously easy. Overall an excellent imperial red.

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Photo of Llcruserll
4.49/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This imperial red is almostlike a mix of an ipa/ red imperial with a pefeclty balanced light sweetness with a nice hoppiness! This beer is one of the smoothest well balanced 10 percenters i have had. Color is a great slightly dark lighter red color. By far the best red i have had and i would also rank it among some of e better ipas i have had. The mouth feel is nice and rich and an amazing aroma. This is a must try for anyone that likes beer with flavor!!!

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Photo of srandycarter
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful, slighly hazy amber, piles of head. Tons of cling lace. Root beer could do no better.

S - Sweet, maltiness sharpened by rye.

T - More malt than rye in the tast, but both are present in quantity. Nice bittering in end.

M - Medium body, good carb, nice balance. I like how it goes from sweet malt to rye to hops. End is more hops and rye than clean or sweet, which is fine with me.

D - Oh, it's a keeper. Glad to try it. It's not even that hot, considering the ABV.

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Photo of leantom
3.49/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Just sampled the Carrack red ale by Mission Brewery. The taste is still fresh in my mind, so I'll right a quick review before it fades. Here goes:

A: Deep, dark amber. Very little light gets through the beer; it's practically opaque. The protein content was also good, as evidenced by the persistent head. Very nice to look at. Unfortunately, the beer falters somewhat from here.

S: Very malty. Hardly the presence of any hops, which is funny considering that it's a "red ale," a style that often tries to balance hop and malt characteristics. Almost sickly sweet. Definitely robust amber and lightly-kilned caramel malts.

T: WHOA! Definitely not like Killian's. Since I was expecting a slightly heavier Killian's Irish Red, I was shocked at the robustness of malt flavor. This beer is not at all well-balanced. It's incredibly thick. There's very little hop character. Mostly, the beer consists of a deluge of caramel and amber malts.

M: Thick and creamy. Certainly good, but not what I was expecting. Oh well, back to Killian's.

O: Good, but not what I was expecting. A little thick and creamy for a red ale, but I guess I should've expected as much given the alcohol content. Enjoyable, just make sure you have it on a cold day or with chocolate desert. Serve at room temp. to get the most flavors.

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Photo of euskera
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer's taste profile is right in my wheehouse. Murky and red as it pours with very little head. Aroma is of caramel and pine tar. Mouthfeel is warm and balanced with lingering alcohol. Taste is just superb, the malt sweetness restrained by the piny and flowery overtones of the hops. Sturdy as the vessel it's named for, this will be ae mainstay in my stash for quite some time...

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Photo of Vierenner
4.34/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not one for hops and this beer has plenty, but it seems they are kept in check by the high alcohol content ... there is a fine balance. I really like this beer. It kind of reminds me of a barleywine ... not sure why. The carbonation is just right, flavors are unique and fulfilling, and there is somewhat of a malty sweetness. Quite impressed!

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Photo of DaveBlack
3.34/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A: Hazy, deep reddish brown. Maybe a finger's width of off-white head to cap it off.

S: Deep, toasted malts, a hefty hit of hops, and lots of alcohol. Rich and sweet smelling, but not a ton of complexity.

T: Heavy amounts of sweet malts upfront, and also a lot of hop flavor, though not as much bitterness as the beer seems to require. Notes of oak, and hay.

M: Moderate amount of carbonation, the body is thick, and buttery, almost chewy.

O: This is definitely a big beer. A lot of Sweetness, and a fair amount of bittering hops. I wish the hops were a little more assertive, to balance out the front. A decent beer, but with the flavors all rushing together, it comes off as a bit of a mess.

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Photo of 57md
3.49/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is a sludgy reddish brown with a finger of beige head. The head dissipated slowly and left some intricate lacing on the glass. The nose has some hop notes, but nothing terribly pronounced. The body is surprisingly thinner than most of the style and the flavor profile is overwhelmed by a sour alcohol presence that lingers (not in a good way).

This beer is somewhat a hot mess – too amped up for its own good.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Holly crap a 10.2% red ale? Hope its worth the $3.29 I spent for it.

A - Such a deep amber brown very hazy with some sediment that ended up in the glass. A 1/4 inch of head is all I get but it does have some great lacing.
S - Smell is rather hoppy with a strong malt smell but very little sweetness.
T - Well I agree it is rather boozy especially for a red ale. It does have a decent hop bite and the malts play pretty well. No sweet caramel taste its like a DIPA of a red ale.
M - Like I said its boozy with a medium body, so its kind of drinkable but in a way not really. Kind of hard to sip at times.

Overall I am not sure why this beer sucks they make a kick ass Imperial stout and their DIPA is pretty tasty. Not worth picking up again.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Carrack is definitely a red ale. Has a nice true crimson color in a deeper browned hue. Collar of beige sits for a good while.

Big, boozy nose dtowns out muddy amber malt tones. Earthy and dank citrus hop notes bleed through slowly. A bruiser of a nose without much focus.

Boozy, for a red ale. Alcohol splices in with slightly earthy, slightly tinny sweet malts and spicy dank hop that resounds to me like Simcoe. It's just not refined enough to control its own strength. Some grapefruit, some dank orange, pine, and a heavy kilning. It could use some more gas to cut the weight and headiness of the feel. Doesn't stand out among other better choices.

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Photo of Brent619
4.44/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A really excellent hoppy red double IPA. I've been getting kegs of Carrack (originally Warship) since it came out over a year ago and it is the office favorite for sure. It is very drinkable despite the 10.2% so be careful! The hoppiest red I know of with a perfect bitter finish.

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Photo of rawfish
3.48/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pour is dark mahogany and notably viscous. Red highlights when held up to the light. Small off white head leaves specks of lacing and average retention.

Aroma is sweet caramel and toffee malts with notes of dark fruit. DIPA strength hop aroma with full citrus and pine. Alcohol blends well with the sweet citrus and malt.

Swamped with sluggish toffee malt, raisins, prune puree and molasses that somehow is able to be combatted with the strength of pine and solid orange citrus hops. I feel fortunate that this bottle was rather fresh so the balance was there. Alcohol is present but not a big factor, slick, heavy malt doesn't promote drying. Lacks the spiciness and complexity of a typical red, bland but points for balance and hop strength.

Wicked low carbonation, deapite the average body it comes off as sluggish and heavy. Alcohol is controlled and as noted not much drying.

Carrack is a red DIPA but with barleywine viscosity and low carbonation. The flavor and hops were done nicely but the sludgy body was a challenge to fight through. Alcohol is deceptive, but you'll feel it after.

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Photo of ISmith87
4.24/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - 4 - reddish amber clear beer with a nice half finger of white head on it that leaves a sparse lacing.
S - 4.25 - caramel malts with a nice citrusy hop smell. grapefruit, orange, mango
T - 4.25 - caramel malts with nice grapefruit, mango, and orange hop flavor. Nice and sweet in a good way.
M - 4.25 - Alc covered, light-medium mouthfeel, and aftertaste is that of sweet malt and citrusy hops, very well ballanced.
I'm surprised to see this got an 82/100. There doesn't seem to be a good reason for that.
O - 4.25 - Great Imperial Red Ale. I like it. I want to see how it stacks up w/ G'Knight.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on-tap and served in a stemmed vase, the beer is a deep, dark, amber coloring with a halo of off-white head. Nose of caramel, butterscotch, and booze. Flavors are heavily roasted, with solid, resinous hops characteristics of dank, herbs, and cannibus. Smooth, rich body, delivering a solid experience all around. Very herbal and grassy aftertaste, with hints of cedar and moss. Slick, clean finish. The increased ABV is very well masked, and this beer is surprisingly easy to drink given all the large and robust characteristics.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.18/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber served into a large wine glass. The Carrack pours a clear deep brown with some luminescent red in the light. An inch of off white cap lingers nicely. Aroma is hop forward with a light malt presence. Piney and earthy and more so when muddled with some caramel malts in the Carrack. Bit sticky overall.

Taste is so so given the initial hop bomb delivery of things and a rather bland malt complexity. This isn't an Alesmith Yulesmith brew by any means. Offers a firm hop aroma but it dies there as the bitterness is quite light on the finish. Touch of sweet cherry at times as expected but a rather dry finish follows. A bit one dimensional though a good spin awakes some hop notes for a time.

Feel is generally a bit thin and offers a moderate sweetness, though still belying a 10% brew, yet a certain stickiness remains on the finish as a window to the true strength of this brew. In the end a bit sticky and a bit boring yet quite capable of its task, just not great.. Expected more from an 'Imperial Red' but not feeling the love so much..

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Photo of Beaver13
3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours hazy reddish amber with a small light tan head that goes to a thin film and leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is sweet nutty malts and some cola with a lot of piney resiny hops.

The flavor is sweet nutty caramel malt with noticeable alcohol and a big resiny piney hop finish (no over the top Summit). The mouthfeel is medium bodied and a little watery.

Overall, a nice big nutty hoppy boozy imperial red.

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Photo of LABrewjourneyman
4.59/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A summer trip to San Diego would not have been complete if I missed out on visiting one of the many excellent breweries. At the time of my visit there was a pitbull charity event happening and lucky for me, there were a couple beers available on tap before they hit distribution. Steadily finding myself in love with Red Ales the past year, the Carrack was my second (or third, who counts?!) sampling and I couldn't have been happier. There is a great deal of punch to this beer, with some of the familiar notes that come with the red badge and color. The percentage lends itself to a bit of a harsh back end for the first bit of the glass, but in that same vein the percentage also lends you to eventually forget about the harsh back end! Mission scores here for the unique characteristics as it only slightly resembles anything out of the competition in the Red Ale genre. This is also probably the highest ABV Red Ale I've found yet. I have yet to find a local carrier so I can't recommend a food pairing here but it did finish off my beer drinking evening early and nicely.

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Photo of biboergosum
4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle. 'Mellifluous'? 'Tenebrous'? Wow - these are my kind of people. Hard to say 'Carrack' without a bad Irish accent, what with all that Flogging Molly in the background, here.

This beer pours a mostly clear, dark red-brick amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and mildly bubbly pale beige head, which leaves a decent swath of paint splatter lace around the glass as things slowly sink away.

It smells of pungent grapefruit, orange, and lime rind citrus, a heady pine resin astringency, equally dulcet and well-spread toasted caramel and toffee malt notes, a touch of buttered biscuit, and further herbal, leafy hops. The taste is more of that big IPA hop goodness - a now somewhat musty orange, grapefruit, and dank lemon pithy fruitiness, a more or less sweet caramel and toffee malt, some middling stripped pine greenery, and an unexpectedly tame booze warming.

The carbonation is present, but in a laid-back party host sort of manner, the body a hefty medium weight, fairly smooth, but for a slight indistinct clamminess, one which also messes with a burgeoning creaminess. It finishes more than off-dry, the caramel malt still leading with its big-ass balls, though not exactly putting all those pretty west coast hops into their 'place', but rather working in concert, such that the focus is duly taken off of you know who.

For its purported strength, this is one well rendered imperial red ale, a proto-style that, IMHO, needs to be addressed here, ASAP, at the very least for the benefit (and safety of) anyone who might stumble across this kick-ass offering, and think it comparable to the Fat Tires (no disrespect) of the world.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Promenade Beer & Wine Festival held in Downtown Long Beach in Long Beach, CA.

Pours a clear copper with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, biscuit, and herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with caramel and earthy herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but there is a very earthy quality that slightly takes away from its drinkability in my opinion.

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Carrack from Mission Brewery
3.78 out of 5 based on 143 ratings.
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